Third collection of White letters

This post contains another set of randomly selected letters from the White collection. The writers are Wm R. White and John E. White, writing between 1935 and 1945. Most letters I have transcribed are multiple pages, but I stopped breaking these out to allow more flow.

pg. 1

P.F.C. Wm. R White
60 Squadron A.T.C.
Romulus, Mich.

(Postmarked Sep 8 1943 1130AM)

Mrs. E L White
3540 No Maryland Ave.
Shorewood, (11) Wis


Dear Mother & T.D.
I got your letter. The one you sent on the 3rd of Sept. I sent you a letter a week after I got here and another a few days after I got your swell package for my birthday. I sent them from the U.S.O. in town on my day off.
I was shure(sic) glad to get your package. It was good and the home made candy I like so mutch(sic) was shure good. Thanks so mutch.
Well I am on the night shift again and will be for the rest of the mo. of Sept.
I will send the pictures to you as soon as I get them back.

pg. 2

I am glad Aunt Bea sold her home, and yet in a way I am not. I liked it very mutch. I supos(sic) it is the wise thing to do though as they are not so young and it is quite a job to take care of.
I got your lovely cards and L.D. too. It is good to know that some one is thinking of you.
So the bands(?) are finally coming through I am glad.
So while I am thinking of it send me the nomber(sic) of your alotment(sic) as I must have it by the 1° of this mo. (Sept). I don’t think it will get here that soon but get it to me as soon as possible and I will try and hold off here. I am glad you have a better job T.D. Is is not odd that you and I are both testing electrical eqpt., you when it is new and I when it needs repairing. John’s job is to get that and other equipmtment(sic) there by the water route, and the Air Transport command’s job is to get it there by air.
Well, I will wright(sic) again soon and will close with Love,

(a picture found in the envelope)

Letter 2

Wm R White, Sgt.
16095066 A.T.C.
60th Squadron
Romulus, Mich.



Dear Mother & T.D.
I am on C.Q. tonight so I am taking time out to wright(sic) this. I sent a box of things to you. I think they will get there on Mon. or Tue. (17-18). There is a little trinket for you in it T.D. It is part of your birthday present. I shall try and get the compact allso(sic). There is a bar with (A.P. Meanie) on it that goes with that metal I brought home on my furlough: There is a watch and two other things that I bought in a hack shop in town here. Put them with my other things as I will need them after the war is over.

pg. 2

There are some K rations that you can open and see what they are like. They are not bad.
If you should not hear from me from time to time do not worry as I am very busy and am apt to slip up now and then
I am going to try and get a 3 day pass next month. I should like to be home on the 26 of Aug. as that will be the end of my 2nd year in the Army. It does not seem that long.
Well that is all I can think of for now.

Letter 3


Dear Mother & T.D.

I wish I could find out why the mail is so mixed up. I got the letter back yesterday that I sent you and T.D. the one with John’s letter in it. It said on the outside that I must have the zone or something on it. I guess that must be the no. 11 you were telling me about. I will send it with this.
I do not think I will be able to get home for the 4th of July as we have a roll call at 5:00 in the morning and I cannot make it in one day. It would be over 600 miles. I shure(sic) would like to. The niggers and whites are at it hot and heavy up here. We have been restricted and cannot leave camp untill it is all over. We are not on yard duty in town. They have men from an infintry(sic) camp to do it.
Well there is not very mutch to say so I will close for now.
Love Bill

PS. Did I tell you I got a stirpe June first. I am a private first class (P.F.C.)

Letter 4

Sgt. Wm R White
1346 ABU ATC Sqdn. C

(Postmarked Sep 15 1945)

Mrs EL White
3540 No Maryland Ave.
Shorewood, 11, Wisc.

Dacca India

Dear Mother & T.D.
Well at long last I got the box of photo eqpt. It is all in good condition. I can sell some of it.

Things shure are in a bit of a mess over here. One day they say we may be home by Xmas. And the next they tell us he don’t know when we will get home. It looks like they don’t want us back in the US. I guess they think we will take al the jobs. People had better start hounding the Congressmen to get us out of India & China, or we will all go nuts over here.

A little bird just hopped into the tent. It has a couple of toes missing. It comes in quite often to eat the ants & other bugs in here.

pg. 2

At nite we have 3 frogs to eat ’em up.
I just got a letter from John, he is well and was in the US on VJ Day. I shure wish I was. I just hope I am in the US by Xmas.

That’s the trouble with my being in the A.T.C. Oh well, I will get home some day and it will be grand to be there.

That’s all for now. Love,

Letter 5

John E White
5 Lake St.
Oswego, N.Y.
Tioga Co.

May 9-35

Mrs. E.L. White.
318 So. Whipple St.
Chicago, Ill.

At Sea

May 9, 1935

Dear Mother, and Billy;
How goo it seems to be near the “journeys(sic) end” and now every day is one day closer to New York and home.

At 8.30 to night I dock in Valpariso but that is to(sic) late to get thru the customs so I will stay on board till tomorrow morning. Then I take the train to Santiago.

Prehaps(sic) you will wonder why I put an English postage on this letter and Chilian postage on Leidies. The reason: I will post this letter on board the ship which is British and the other I am posting in Vaparizo which is Chile. I only have about two minutes to get this into the box so I will have to step on it. It is winter here now and the mountains are covered with snow. I must cross the Andes next Monday and are they cold. Well I should fret(?) it is the last time I have to cross them and it will only take twelve hourse so I don’t care very much.

They are having a farewell on the ship this evening so I have to go change my cloths(sic) and time is up on the post. All in all it has been a very pleasant 4 day trip and I didn’t even get sea sick in a rough spot at sea we were in for two days and a night.

I sent a letter to Lee Roat too I haven’t heard from him in a long time but that is my fault as I didn’t write myself. Well now I am going to say good by with love to you all the relatives.

Your Loveing Son,

Letter 6

John E. Whie
Pier 15 Houston Texas
S.S. Texas Ranger

(Postmarked May 21 1936 6PM)

Mr. E.L. White
1257 North Massasoite
Chicago, Ill.

New York City
May 21-1936

Dear Mother:

I have just received your adress(sic) from Mercedes and I was surprised to say the least to hear that you were in the Hospital because of an apperation(sic) and how glad I was this morning to here(sic) that you are comeing along fine.

I also have been under the weather with fever lately. I was told by the Dr. that I may have to have my spleen removed and the only doctor who is competent enough to do it is in Paris so I may go there some time after Xmas then spend 3 or 4 months touring about Europe. Every week I find I am loseing strength and weight so something will have to be done. I take expensive treatment and get little or no results and have to spend as much time in Texas as possible.

My income is here in New York and it keeps me hard set going back and forth. I began to drop back since my trip to California and Washington last winter. It was so damp in Portland, Ore. and Seattle, Wash.

The time I spend in Texas is doing me a lot of good and there is hope that I can regain a blood strength sufficient to resist these fever attacks. If that happens I can keep it at abeyance long enough to drive the germs out of my spleen and back into the blood where they won’t be so harmfull. Well that is enough about myself so now I will tell you something about my last trip to Houston.

I left New York on April 28th and the first 4 days were a dream. The seas was an exquisite Venitian blue and at sunset when the low clouds on the horizon were tinted dull gold and old rose deepening in light(?) to mauve and purple. In patches the sky show with a luminous peacock green to transparent blue while the sea itself – –

There are no words in the English language to adaquately portray the sea. Near the horizon it appears to be a great inferno of molton fire dwindeling down to dark green near the ship but passing thru all the colors from scarlet to the color of the (?) at noon, passingahead of the ship into a carpet of velvet grey.

Every little ripple on the water reminds me of the fary tales you used to read to us as they look to be so many little golden nymphs dancing across the water animated with the pure glory and joy of life.

Now after the sun set on cirtain nights comes the moon. How can I tell you of something you can better imagine. Let me just say that I spend hours just siting in a deck chair looking off over the stern of the ship at the play of silver light on the wake and foam caused by the ship’s propeller.

Texas is celebrating its 100th anniversary since their independence from Mexico, and believe me they are celbrating in style. They are going to have a fair in Dallas like the worlds fair was in Chicago. This time I am going down to Matamoras Mexico by way of Houston for a few days. I will dop you a line from there.

As we are sailing this afternoon at 3 and I have many things to do I will close with love to you and to Aunt Maggie (over)

Your Loving Son

John E. White
Pier 15 Houston, Texas,
S.S. Texas Ranger

I edited Letter 6 with only a few initial “thus,” i.e., (sic) annotations to allow the reader an uninterrupted series of sentences. If you have read the other posts on the White letters collection, you will be familiar with the spelling styles of the various authors. Thanks for reading.

One Reply to “Third collection of White letters”

  1. Insider notes:
    9-7-43 Wm. White:
    Aunt Bea is Ester’s sister, Bridget (nee)McCarthy. Bea was married to Joe Wallace. The sold house was referred to in a poem in a book called “Farm Ballads.” There is a reference to it written on a penciled family tree my mother (Mercedes (nee) White Stoddard researched. Bea and Joe subsequently moved to Florida. Aunt Bea was Mari Stoddard’s Godmother.

    I am not positive about the time frame, Mercedes’s job testing electrical parts might have been the job I know she held at Ladish (?) Industries in Milwaukee. When Bill was deployed overseas, Mercedes took leave from University of Wisconsin in order to work and support their mother, Ester. I recall Mother telling me that they hired her in as a Chemist–the title being conferred because she was university educated. I could be mixing up info on different jobs that she held though.

    John E. White (Postmarked May 21 1936 6PM)
    Aunt Maggie (Margaret) was another of the McCarthy girls, one of Ester’s sisters. Two family stories that I think are about her suggest a very pert and self confident woman. You can ask me personally to tell you the family stories, and/or you (Mari, Juanita) can correct me if she is not the character starring in the two tales to which I alude: “Why didn’t you catch me?” and “Sir, if you put us off this train, we will get right back on the next one.”

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